Barstool Sports appears headed for a TV show
Barstool Sports made major news recently when it was announced former TV executive and investor Peter Chernin was buying a large stake of the company. Now we’re already starting to see some of the effects of the financial move taking shape.
Barstool announced this week the hiring of two new contributors — the humorous satirizer PFT Commenter and Katherine Timpf. They paired PFT Commenter with existing personality, Chicago-based Big Cat, for a new podcast which is currently the top-ranked podcast in iTunes despite not even having released a full show yet (the debut is set for Friday). The podcast plans to run three times a week being published on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
The hilariously named “Pardon My Take” podcast featuring PFT Commenter and Big Cat seems to be part of a new podcast initiative for Barstool. In addition to Pardon My Take, they already have New York-based KFC’s “Mailtime” podcast, and founder Dave Portnoy recently launched his “The Dave Portnoy Show,” which is also top five in iTunes.
But the real game-changer could be a TV show, which seems to be in the works.
From the moment Chernin bought a stake in the company, one could see TV was the direction this group was headed. Chernin is a former president of News Corp (which runs all the Fox brands), a former Showtime exec, and he owns a production company which makes many TV shows and movies. Barstool already produces a popular daily TV show called “The Rundown” which streams online.
This week the crew was in LA meeting with top Hollywood agents who are trying to sign the group with the idea of pitching them to networks. In his Mailtime podcast posted Thursday, KFC and Big Cat talked about their meetings and acknowledged that “The Rundown” will likely end up on TV somewhere. KFC did say it’s likely they initially end up somewhere not quite as high-profile, such as late night on Comedy Central, to begin their TV careers.
Barstool’s biggest personalities — Portnoy, Big Cat and KFC — have said they view their brand as a comedy one more than a sports one.
Upon learning of Chernin’s investment in the company, which we’re guessing was in the range of $5-$10 million, I predicted the company would eventually have a value in the $200 million range. Being put on TV where their brand will be exposed to a newer and even larger audience is one of the first steps in that direction.